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Tracking militarists’ efforts to influence U.S. foreign policy

Pentagon Reined in Cheney’s Plans for Iran Strikes; Plus, Profile on Douglas Feith, Thomas McI

FEATURED ARTICLE

Pentagon Reined in Cheney’s Plans for Iran Strikes
Analysis by Gareth Porter (Inter Press Service)

A proposal by Vice President Dick Cheney to strike Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps bases last summer was apparently thwarted by the Pentagon because of concerns that it could spark an all-out war. But that was before Adm. William Fallon was dismissed as head of Central Command and replaced with Gen. David Petraeus, a Cheney ally. Read full story.

FEATURED PROFILES

Douglas Feith
A former Pentagon official whose office generated information that was used to push the United States toward war with Iraq, Feith recently published a memoir in which he blames others for the missteps in Iraq.

Thomas McInerney
Connected to various military contractors and hardline advocacy groups, the Fox News analyst and retired general received talking points from the Bush administration as part of a Pentagon program to influence U.S. views on the “war on terror.”

ALSO NEW ON RIGHT WEB

Olmert Takes a Break; Hagee Wins Applause
By Nathan Guttman (The Forward)

At the annual meeting of the influential American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the presidential candidates pledged their support for Israel, the group’s agenda veered to the right, and controversial Christian Right leader John Hagee earned enthusiastic applause. Read full story.

A Foregone Conclusion
By Jim Lobe (Inter Press Service)

The Bush administration’s arguments for invading Iraq were largely unsupported by the evidence provided by the U.S. intelligence community, according to a long-awaited Senate report. Read full story.

Protesters Draw Attention to Guantanamo
By Haider Rizvi (Inter Press Service)

As the Bush administration continues to defend indefinite detentions of prisoners in the “war on terror,” protesters go to trial. Read full story.

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Featured Profiles

Update was slow, but still no lag in the editor window, and footnotes are intact.     This has been updated – Bernard Lewis, who passed away in May 2018, was a renowned British-American historian of Islam and the Middle East. A former British intelligence officer, Foreign Office staffer, and Princeton University professor, Lewis was…


Bernard Lewis was a renowned historian of Islam and the Middle East who stirred controversy with his often chauvinistic attitude towards the Muslim world and his associations with high-profile neoconservatives and foreign policy hawks.


John Bolton, the controversial former U.S. ambassador to the UN and dyed-in the-wool foreign policy hawk, is President Trump’s National Security Adviser McMaster, reflecting a sharp move to the hawkish extreme by the administration.


Michael Joyce, who passed away in 2006, was once described by neoconservative guru Irving Kristol as the “godfather of modern philanthropy.”


Mike Pompeo, the Trump administration’s second secretary of state, is a long time foreign policy hawk and has led the public charge for an aggressive policy toward Iran.


Max Boot, neoconservative military historian at the Council on Foreign Relations, on Trump and Russia: “At every turn Trump is undercutting the ‘get tough on Russia’ message because he just can’t help himself, he just loves Putin too much.”


Michael Flynn is a former Trump administration National Security Advisor who was forced to step down only weeks on the job because of his controversial contacts with Russian officials before Trump took office.


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From the Wires

Trump is not the problem. Think of him instead as a summons to address the real problem, which in a nation ostensibly of, by, and for the people is the collective responsibility of the people themselves. For Americans to shirk that responsibility further will almost surely pave the way for more Trumps — or someone worse — to come.


The United Nations has once again turn into a battleground between the United States and Iran, which are experiencing one of the darkest moments in their bilateral relations.


In many ways, Donald Trump’s bellicosity, his militarism, his hectoring cant about American exceptionalism and national greatness, his bullying of allies—all of it makes him not an opponent of neoconservatism but its apotheosis. Trump is a logical culmination of the Bush era as consolidated by Obama.


For the past few decades the vast majority of private security companies like Blackwater and DynCorp operating internationally have come from a relatively small number of countries: the United States, Great Britain and other European countries, and Russia. But that seeming monopoly is opening up to new players, like DeWe Group, China Security and Protection Group, and Huaxin Zhongan Group. What they all have in common is that they are from China.


The Trump administration’s massive sales of tanks, helicopters, and fighter aircraft are indeed a grim wonder of the modern world and never receive the attention they truly deserve. However, a potentially deadlier aspect of the U.S. weapons trade receives even less attention than the sale of big-ticket items: the export of firearms, ammunition, and related equipment.


Soon after a Saudi-led coalition strike on a bus killed 40 children on August 9, a CENTCOM spokesperson stated to Vox, “We may never know if the munition [used] was one that the U.S. sold to them.”


The West has dominated the post-war narrative with its doctrine of liberal values, arguing that not only were they right in themselves but that economic success itself depended on their application. Two developments have challenged those claims. The first was the West’s own betrayal of its principles: on too many occasions the self interest of the powerful, and disdain for the victims of collateral damage, has showed through. The second dates from more recently: the growth of Chinese capitalism owes nothing to a democratic system of government, let alone liberal values.


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